Now that Philip Rivers is officially going to become a free agent in March and become a former Los Angeles Chargers quarterback, DraftKings Sportsbook has posted odds for his next team. We have two extreme front runners and then a sizable group of “if the pieces fall right,” and then a mass of longshots.
I threw out a few options earlier this week when the news came out that the Chargers and Rivers had parted ways. My list consisted of the Carolina Panthers, Oakland Raiders, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Chicago Bears in no particular order. DraftKings Sportsbook has a similar favorites list, with the addition of the Patriots, which makes sense if Tom Brady leaves. They also have the Jaguars as longer shots than I do, likely due to Gardner Minshew and the cash they gave Nick Foles.
The teams with under +2000 odds to land Rivers are:
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: +100
Indianapolis Colts: +100
Chicago Bears: +1000
Las Vegas Raiders: +1000
Miami Dolphins: +1400
New England Patriots: +1600
Carolina Panthers: +2000
Los Angeles Chargers: +2000
Tennessee Titans: +2000
The Buccaneers and Colts lead the way, as reports out of Tampa Bay show that the team is interested and the Colts are in need of a stop-gap with Jacoby Brissett looking bad in the second half of last season. Of course, Jameis Winston threw for the most yards and touchdowns in the league last season, but also had 30 interceptions, while Rivers was awful on deep passes and had 20 interceptions on much fewer pass attempts.
I believe the Colts make for the best spot for Rivers, as he would likely fit well into Frank Reich’s offense and would finally have a strong offensive line to give him some time on those deep passes.
The other good spots for Rivers would likely mean the starter from last season getting benched, traded or let go. The Bears and Raiders aren’t going to win a Super Bowl with their current quarterbacks, so giving Rivers a shot isn’t the worst idea. The Dolphins are most-likely going to draft Tua Tagovailoa, who may need more time to recover, meaning they will need to make a decision on their Week 1 starter for 2020. Sticking with Ryan Fitzpatrick makes more sense than going with Rivers, who likely wants to play for a team that is at least a little closer to winning it all.
If Brady leaves, Rivers with Belichick would be fun just to see what would happen. I expect he’d get the most out of him and it would be a great way for Belichick to show that it was him instead of Brady as the crux to all those titles.
No matter what happens, it will be interesting to see if Rivers has anything left in the tank for a new team.
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